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PHOTO CAPTION: BMW i3 electric city car is said to run around €40,000 in Europe.

BMW to Offer i3 Electric Car Owners Occasional Use of Gasoline Models

In addition to offering the use of a longer-range gasoline car, BMW is establishing a chain of 30 minute quick-charging stations along the 590-kilometer route from Munich to Berlin.

Published: 19-Apr-2013

Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW), the world’s biggest luxury-car maker, will offer extra services to attract drivers to its I electric-car lineup, including occasional use of gasoline-powered models.

BMW will install optional at-home fast-charging systems for the i3 city car coming out at the end of 2013, Marcus Krieg, a sales and marketing manager, said at a presentation in Leipzig, Germany. Onboard navigation software will be programmed to detect the nearest public charging station during trips, and i3 owners will be able to borrow a gasoline-fueled car from their dealer for weekend or vacation travel requiring a longer range.

The four-seat, battery-powered i3 will enter a market that has yet to meet industry expectations. U.S. deliveries of Nissan Motor Co. (7201)’s electric Leaf failed to reach even half of the 20,000 cars the Japanese manufacturer was targeting last year. Munich-based BMW is targeting early earnings from its electric line-up by offsetting expensive new materials with a sales setup intended to limit distribution costs.

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